THE COLD OF THE MORNING,
THE GREAT LOST CLASSIC BY
MEMPHIS MUSIC CATALYST SID SELVIDGE,
COMING ON CD/LP/DIGITAL FROM OMNIVORE RECORDINGS
Sid Selvidge’s The Cold Of The Morning is a mid-’70s Memphis classic that almost never saw the light of day. Selvidge and producer Jim Dickinson (Big Star, Ry Cooder, The Replacements) created this twelve-track song cycle live in the studio in 1975, with Selvidge on vocals and guitar, plus Dickinson on piano with Memphis’ iconic Mudboy and the Neutrons on two tracks. The cover photo was by William Eggleston.
The record seemed destined for greatness. But when the benefactor of Peabody Records decided at the last minute not to put it out, he gave the rights to the LP to Selvidge, who drove down to the plant, loaded up his car and distributed the discs himself. The album eventually found its way into regional stores and the national press, even reaching the Cashbox charts, which was enough to take Selvidge to New York. But life intervened, and bigger record deals were not in the cards.
On March 11 2014, Omnivore Recordings will issue this indelible piece of the Memphis music canon on CD (unavailable for more than two decades and with newly discovered bonus tracks) and on LP for the first time since its original release. The LP, the initial run of which will be pressed on blue vinyl, will contain a download card for the entire album plus bonus tracks.
Co-produced by Sid’s son, Steve (The Hold Steady), The Cold Of The Morning has been expanded to include six previously unissued tracks from the original sessions – (the CD/digital contains the full eighteen-track playlist, while the LP has the original twelve tracks with a download card for the full eighteen songs). Consisting of originals, blues standards, and Broadway classics, the record is not only a snapshot of a time and place, but of Selvidge himself. The package includes rare photographs and an in-depth essay by Bob Mehr of Memphis’ publication Commercial Appeal.
Selvidge would eventually turn Peabody into a boutique label, issuing records by Cybil Shepherd, and even Alex Chilton’s solo debut Like Flies on Sherbert. He continued to record, releasing a 1993 album on Elektra and a triumphant swan song I Should Be Blue in 2010. The Greenville, Miss. native and former DJ also co-founded the syndicated Beale Street Caravan radio program, beaming the influential music of Memphis to the world.
But it all began on The Cold Of The Morning. “He said, ‘Look, I’ve made my classic record,” recalls his son, Steve. “It was almost like he was apart from it. It really was the perfect capturing of the perfect moment, and it made for his most perfect statement.”
1. I’ve Got A Secret (Didn’t We Shake Sugaree)
2. Frank’s Tune
3. The Outlaw
4. Boll Weevil
5. Wished I Had A Dime
6. Judge Boushé
7. Then I’d Be Satisfied With Life
8. Danny Boy
10. Many A Mile
11. I Get The Blues When It Rains
12. Miss The Mississippi And You
Bonus Tracks: Included On CD And As Digital Download On LP:
13. East St. Louis Blues
14. Wild About My Lovin’
15. Keep It Clean
16. Atomic Power
17. Wished I Had A Dime (Alternate Take)
18. Ain’t Nobody’s Business